a PSC In The News reference
"The weird Google searches of the unemployed and what they say about the economy" - Washington Post. 05/30/2014.
This story looks at how researchers are using big data — culled from internet browsing histories and social media use — to predict unemployment rates, retail prices, home buying, and more, often before the U.S. releases its official estimates. Matthew Shapiro says: “Statistics serve us really well and are completely essential as benchmarks for where the economy is — or more precisely, has been. But we don’t have a lot of indicators that tell us what’s happening right now, particularly when the economy is changing direction.”